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I am taking care of mom 74 no major illnesses. she has osteoarthritis, b/p, diabetes on pills . age related stuff. She has achilles tendon torn and plantar facitatis(spelled wrong) which is healing the podiatrist said . she has a brace that feets inside the shoe. what i am trying to say is this, she is mobile and could be active. But, she has taken to her death bed so to speak. very verbally abusive, sarcastic and more. my brother is 44 and is special needs. he has learning disabilities, speech difficulities, and has partial deafness helped with hearing aids. He is not much of a problem except he 44y.o with 5-14y.o. learning and actions. He causes no problems, doesnt get in trouble. has problems with depression anxiety mood swings. His biggest problem was mom and dad. mostly mom. She tells him what he cannot do and can do etc. Writing this is stressing me out.
My mom was not loving, or attentive to our needs. mom or dad didnt socialize themselves and not us either. We all work and are not in trouble etc. I am the eldest of 4. My sister is 2yrs younger than me and has some medical issues as does her husband, lives next door to mom. my eldest brother is 48 yrs has wife and adult daughter with grandbaby. he works full time and also lives near mom. we all live on the farm we call it. they gave each of us property so we could get a better start. and that leaves my younger brother 44yr. i have already described.
well, i am a widow and have a 32 y.o daughter i raised myself and we are very close and my 11 lb dog named Polli.. My mom begged me to come and take care of her. live with her. i had to build and pay for a bedroom and bathroom in order to stay there .I did and I am staying with her. I am exhausted, stressed in physical pain (from medical problems). I have been with mom full time 8 months now. my sister doesnt call or visit. my brother is always too busy working (he tells mom that's what he is doing). granted he does work a lot but i also know that he spends lots of time with my sis n law family. I need advice how to get them to help share the load. thanks.

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shockm: The only way you can get someone to start interacting is your going to have to start. Make short phone calls, meet maybe for lunch. You two are like complete strangers, so approach it that way. Baby steps.. At this point you need to just become friends and leave all the family drama out of it. Just get to know him and his world.
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I have a special needs son, Ryan, who is now 28. He has autism. He is very well loved but has been in residential care due to the complexity of his disability. My ex-husband and I visit with him often, my present husband has always visited as well. Ryan has a brother, Jason, who is 18 months older. They were very close in age growing up. I made sure Jason had everything he needed in his childhood, he went to his parties with school friends, visits with grandparents, may things Ryan didn't get. Well, Jason has never made an effort to be a real brother to Ryan, he made attempts but not successful ones. Ryan is non-verbal but is very smart and understands everything. As Jason got older, he grew farther away from me and the family. He is married now and just stays his distance. It hurts me very much that he never formed a bond with his brother. He has told me that he would take over guardianship of Ryan if I pass away prematurely but I don't trust that he will do it. I don't think there is anything I can do at this point to get him to be closer to us, any suggestions?
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I really appreciate you're answers/replies. I realize that I am the only child so to speak and that maybe just maybe my siblings will get over thinking that I will get their house etc so i should just be a slave for the rest of my life (which will be according to statistics on age at death) taking care of both of them. I have no answers and still feel quite overwhelmed; however, I am doing it everyday. With God's help only will i overcome. thanks to all of you and I welcome all input you have on any topic.
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Hi Coulditbeme, how are you doing now? I'm back to finish my first comment to you. Years ago, I would complain all the time to my siblings on how I was treated by dad. He was verbally and physically abusive. So many times, I wanted to pack up and leave but I knew if I did this, he would end up hitting mom. Mom is completely bedridden - she cannot move at all - not even her head or finger. Sometimes, when I come home, she has a black eye. I mean what did mom ever do to deserve that punch? She cannot talk, so it's not because she was disrespectful. It's not because she showed him a finger, cuz she cannot move. He just hits her to take out his frustration.

So, I complain to the siblings all the time. When he hits her, when he hits me, the verbal abuse I put up with, the financial struggle to buy pampers, wipes, etc... Sometimes we have no food since that's the last to buy with our money.

So, younger sister, will bring grocery when she visits. Finally, my older brother felt bad, and he would send $50/month. I wasn't going to complain because every dollar counts. Sometimes, younger brother feels bad, so he will send about $300.00 in a year. These were the 3 of 7 siblings who would help.

My older sister is always broke so she never sends money. But when she flies over to visit, I take my vacation from the parents. I let her do all the tending, cooking, etc...I actually get to finally sleep in my bedroom.

Oldest brother, who lives next door, and have 3 grown children with their spouses all living under one roof. He / they rarely helped. His daughter was suppose to be helping me with mom (dead weight - difficult to change pampers by myself) on changing her pampers in the morning and late evening. Nope. His youngest boy was suppose to move in to help me with my 2 bedridden parents. Nope.......this year, I accidentally let out that older brother was now sending me $100/month. Oldest bro and older bro have Always Competed since we were children. So, Oldest bro said he will take over our power bill (thank goodness!!) I accepted really fast because our power bill is about $450 to $600 a month. I was not about to be polite and say, "no, no, it's okay." Ha!

Oh, oldest sis is now helping me from Mon-Friday while I'm at work. I originally asked her if she can help babysit (she doesn't do pampers) since we cannot afford for me to quit my job. I would pay her $40/payday. But, with my oldest bro paying for the power bill, I can add another $200/month to sister. I appreciate her babysitting so I try to give her extra cash when I can. Because I sure do not want to quit my job to care for the parents.

So, basically, what I have done was tell the family the hardship I was going through. I never ordered them or told them that "you Should do this" or "you Have to do this.." I only tell them what I'm going through. This took YEARS of UPDATES by email and by text messages. I think this will be the only way my siblings will ever help me. And I take what I can.

So, I hope this helps you. Hugs to you!!
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COULDITBEME, life's not fair! If it were, for starters your mother would have been loving, nurturing, and attentive to all of her children. It life were fair, your youngest brother would not be disabled. If life were fair, your sibs would pitch in and help you care for your mother.

I don't know why you have chosen to devote your life to taking care of this sarcastic, abusive, malingering woman, but you did. Did your brother and sister agree to help you when you made that decision? If not, why do you expect them to? Perhaps if they'd been in charge they would have decided, "No Mom, we don't agree with adding a bedroom to your house, and we think it would be best if you go to assisted living." In any case, each of you made different decisions regarding What To Do About Mother. There is no particular reason that your decision should obligate your brother and sister to change their minds about how much they are willing to help Mother.

But what about youngest brother? Would your sister and brother be more open to helping you regarding him? And what is the gameplan for him after mother passes, or for that matter, while she is unable/unwilling to care for him? If you weren't in the picture, how would he be getting along? Do you intend to be in the picture forever? Did your parents make any long-term provisions for him, such as a trust fund? Has anyone looked into other living arrangments for him, such as a shelterred group home? Making plans for your YB might be something the three of you could work on cooperatively.

But your immediate concern is how to deal with caring for your mother and brother all alone. I think that Bookworm has given you some excellent advice from her personal experience. Accept that you are all alone in this endeavor, and start looking elsewhere for the help you need and deserve. Think about how you would handle this if you were an only child, because for all practical purposes in this context you are.

I wish you the best of luck as you deal with these particular examples of life's unfairness.
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Hi Coulditbeme, I'm new to this site since June of this year. If you click on my name, you will read my background. Then, just hit "backspace" to continue with my story here. I have 7 sisters and brothers. I thought when dad had his stroke last year and became bedridden that my family will FINALLY pitch in to help. I was even told my 19yr old nephew, his gf and son will move in to help me..Nothing!

So, this May, the respite program came over to visit me. They originally were here for my dad before he had the stroke. Now that he is bedridden, I have become the main caregiver. So, now they came to interview me to see if they will continue the respite program to ME. Obviously, something in the interview raised a red flag because they really pushed hard for me to get a one-to-one therapy for the following week.

I had the therapy, explained my situation, and how I have Asked, Begged, Threatened to walk out on the parents and finally said that I was Suicidal - and they didn't come to help. I concluded to the therapist: "My family doesn't care for me." Do you know what he said, "OF COURSE YOUR FAMILY DOESN'T CARE FOR YOU." I knew it in my heart but for him, a stranger, to confirm it - helped me to accept it.

Cut to the end, a few days later, I hit rock bottom because it hit me that I have been caring for mom for 23 years, and now dad is bedridden. I will never be free. I was in a prison and there was no OUT. I decided to commit suicide on Friday but a part of me didn't want to die. I came on this site and asked for help. And I got it.

Coulditbeme, my mom has been bedridden for 23yrs. It was only me and dad caring for her. If my large family didn't help us all these years, what made me think they will now step in? I learned from here, that once you have done your best to get your family to help - and it doesn't work (despite the asking, begging, threatening and suicidal cry for help) ....Then it's time to accept this.

I learned from here: Each of us kids (children of our parents) have a Right Not to Help our parents. Our parents should have the forethought to plan of their eventual old age and not assume one of their children will care for them. If our sibling does not help - that is their Right. Just as no one forced us to step up to care for our parents - we chose this - whether from the goodness of our heart, religious reasons or parents putting the guilt trip on us. We Chose This. Accept it. Once we accept this - no help from siblings, now we can concentrate on What can you do for your parent. There are all kinds of programs out there. My dad had to do that when mom started showing signs of Alzheimer. He just kept on calling and calling. We now have free lunch delivered to the "patient" from Mon-Friday, we have a once-a-week respite (for us caregivers to rest), and the Catholic Social Service comes every day Mon-Friday to sponge bath them. CSS was suppose to be only once a week. But dad fought hard for them to make it daily.

If your family helps, good! But if they don't, then please start dialing. It never hurts to ask the person you call if they know of any other services that you can call. It's called networking. Maybe next time, I will tell you how I got my siblings to help financially - but this was Not an easy thing to do! It took years before we got to where I am now! I will take any help I can. If they refuse to help physically, then financial is always welcome. (Have you seen the cost of wipes, adult pampers, toilet tissues, etc?)

I wish you well. Please check out the sites that Karieh mentioned above. Take notes if it helps. Take Care!!!
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COULDITBEME,

Hi. I am sorry to hear that your siblings will not help you with caregiving. Unfortunately, we hear this a lot from caregivers. Many caregivers on our site deal with family and sibling problems.

Our editors and experts wrote some articles that I thought might help you with your situation. I hope these help.

Top 3 Excuses From Siblings Who Don't Help With Caregiving
https://www.agingcare.com/articles/siblings-conflicts-caregiving-for-elderly-parents-142138.htm

Family Won’t Help With Caregiving? How to Change Their Mind
https://www.agingcare.com/articles/get-family-to-help-with-caring-for-elderly-mother-father-140855.htm

Getting Your Siblings to Help With Caregiving
https://www.agingcare.com/articles/Getting-Your-Siblings-to-Help-With-Caregiving-133240.htm
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